What And Why
December 25, 2012
Submitted by the owners of El Parque Casa #2 as a comment on the There Are No Bad Guys Here post below. Length exceeded the comment size limit and it has been converted to this post.
Given the near-hysterical level of antagonism towards us now being shown by the Board of Directors, the Administrator and others, we feel it is appropriate to put forward the truth regarding our efforts relating to certain activities by the Board.
Several months ago, we obtained (and paid for) a written legal opinion from a reputable notary indicating that gambling without the necessary license is a serious Federal offence. The Board’s response was to denigrate both us and the notary and to dismiss our efforts as “troublemaking”. Our primary concern was with the fact that numerous people from outside El Parque were coming in for the express purpose of gambling and that the public nature of the activity could cause difficulties for the homeowners.
We were widely derided for questioning the wisdom of holding public gambling within El Parque. Interestingly, we understand that the gambling that is now taking place is limited to residents.
Regarding the issue of licensing of the Clubhouse bar/restaurant activities, we received advice from municipal officials that is contrary to the verbal assurances the Board claims to have been given. All Mexicans selling food and beverages to the public are required by law to purchase a license. By having food and beverages sold through the unlicensed Clubhouse to residents AND visitors from outside El Parque, we are essentially engaging in unfair competition with the Mexican businesses in the area. We have no interest in limiting residents’ opportunities for fun and socializing, but are concerned that the degree of organization and apparent profit involved in the Happy Hour and other Clubhouse events has elevated the activity to the level of a business enterprise.
Further, for a few years now, there have been rumors and bits of information indicating that the financial information released to homeowners by the Board of Directors does not accurately reflect the true state of El Parque finances. In the past, when others approached the Board to discuss financial information, they were insulted and their requests refused. Howard therefore chose to take advantage of the provisions of the Jalisco Civil Code expressly giving a condo homeowner the right to access the condo’s financial records.
We had hoped that Howard’s request to access the financial records could be an arm’s length, non-adversarial, transparent process. We are not looking for a full forensic audit nor are we alleging that there is “money missing”. Rather, we are seeking to confirm that standard procedures are being used and that the numbers released to homeowners are accurate. Howard is assuming all costs. There are no "labor" costs to the homeowners since the only action required is to have the accountant release the diskettes holding the financial information to our auditor. Nor should there be any homeowners’ personal financial information included in the El Parque financial records.
Since Howard announced he would be seeking the release of the financial records for the purposes of an audit, the Board’s smear campaign against us ramped up considerably and appears to have been orchestrated. As well, an old accusation that we had attempted to bribe a municipal official was conveniently resurrected. This false and unsubstantiated allegation was initially made against us several months ago, by a member of the Board. To set the record straight, again - at NO time have we or our lawyer bribed or attempted to bribe an “honorable official” or anyone else, for that matter. Our lawyer confronted the official who we had supposedly attempted to bribe. This official claimed that he had not been referring to us.
This Board has never tolerated having its decisions questioned and responds to any objections with antagonism. This is the case here. The Administrator, presumably under instructions from the Board, has been rude and uncooperative. After several weeks of obstruction, she and our lawyer attended a “mediation process” before a judge where a mediation agreement was signed on November 8 by the Administrator and our lawyer indicating that she would provide us with the date the accountant would be available to release the diskettes to our auditor. Despite signing the agreement, she has so far failed to abide by it. Our efforts are ongoing. The remarkably vitriolic and vigorous response of the Board forces us to conclude that the Board may very well be hiding something.
As well, on November 15 an unsuccessful attempt was made to have Howard deported. The information we received indicates that the President of the Board and the Administrator contacted Federal Immigration officials, asking them to enter El Parque for the purpose of investigating Howard. There has since been another attempt to persuade Immigration to deport Howard.
In short, rather than simplistically labeling certain concerned individuals “troublemakers”, homeowners would be well-advised to take a close look at the manner in which the Board of Directors deals with those with whom it does not agree. In general, homeowners should expect their Board of Directors to resolve disputes in an adult, conciliatory manner, to actively attempt to arrive at consensus or acceptable compromises when there are objections to a particular course of action and to be open and transparent regarding matters relevant to the financial and social interests of the homeowners. However, this Board has, time after time, responded to questions or objections with antagonism, rudeness, smears and, in our case, lies. If anyone is responsible for the alleged “lowering of property values” or creating a “toxic” environment, it is this Board.
Talk about blowing smoke!!! What does deportation have to do with the question posed? Do Howard and Diane have specific questions with respect to the 2012 accounts? If so, what are they? If not, why do they want an audit? Simple question, looking for a simple answer.
posted by ( ): 4:51 PM, February 05, 2013
Why would anyone chose to voice suspicions and allegations when the most responsible thing to do is just ask to examine the books or request an audit? I don't see where that is viewed as a horrible request. It is the right of each and every one of us. Apparently statements and accusations without facts would be a more desirable approach in your estimation.
posted by Anonymous: 9:34 AM, February 08, 2013
Anonymous said: There have been numerous requests for financial information submitted in writing and signed by the Administrator on several occasions. That information has not been provided by the administration. Howard and Diane are concerned because: 1) Our professional accountant, David Rizo, the board of directors, the Administrator, and a past president of the board have all agreed in a homeowner's meeting that there have been significant deficits for at least 4 of the past 6 years and that the accumulation of those deficits amounts to about 416,000 pesos. Their contention is that those deficits have been "taken care of". None of them could or would provide any evidence or documentation as to How or When those deficits were "taken care of". 2) The administrator and the board have not responded to requests for financial information. Statements and accusation should be understandable absent access to facts from responsible parties. Satisfied?
posted by Anonymous: 9:43 AM, February 09, 2013
WHAT?!? 416,000 pesos!?!
posted by Anonymous: 6:47 AM, February 10, 2013
Yeah, you might want to ask them about it. See if you can get a straight answer. If not, then you may be interested in seeing the books too. Or you can try to find our Treasurer who has left the community and living in Texas, he's certainly not here to answer any questions!
posted by Anonymous: 8:26 AM, February 11, 2013
I am confused. I see no reason that Howard or whoever the homeowner would not be allowed to "look at the books". If it is an audit he wants (by an accountant) i understand the board is willing for this to happen as long as he is willing to fund it??
posted by Anonymous: 8:50 AM, March 16, 2013
For the umpteenth?? time, it has been made clear by Howard and Dee, that they were more than willing, and in fact are going to pay for the forensic accounting , when and if this board allows our secretary/admin, to release the records. Reasonable people might ask this question. Why have they not released the info??
Nothing wrong with the books, best way to stop the nonsense, is to release the documents, let's put an end to the speculations once and for all. After all coming on two years and counting.
posted by Anonymous: 10:29 AM, March 17, 2013
My simple response to the feb 5 comment, re: a simple answer, is that it is every homeowners right to have access to financial information, whether there are reasons to be suspicious or not. Denying the info for so long only opens the door for questions in need of answers.
posted by Anonymous: 10:40 AM, March 17, 2013
When you read all of the dissenting responses on this blog, to issues that are raised by people who are concerned with the well being of our condo, the only question we need to ask ourselves, is" WHY" !! Why the rancor to simple questions being asked?
Why no response from the b.o.d. in a straight forward manner?? Why has there been delay after delay in allowing the review of the finances. Why the drastic moves against the homeowners who have questioned them. Why DEPORTATION and PROSECUTION?? And finally Why are they afraid?? Sorry, one more. Why has every member of this administration signed onto and encouraged every homeowner to vilify these targeted homeowners. All i would like to know is "WHY".
posted by Anonymous: 7:06 PM, March 19, 2013
Yes. I agree the Board/Administrator should be called upon to explain their (deplorable) actions.
posted by edp: 6:08 AM, March 20, 2013